DESCRIPTION OF THE LAND AREA IN DISPUTE:
All that piece and parcel of land at OGUNDAIRO BASHORUN AND SUNMONU AKANO LANDS AT AMUWO ODOFIN in Amuwo Odofin Local Government.
NAME(S) OF THE PARTIES TO THE SUIT:
Theophilus Ikechukwu Belonwu
Mr. Steve Ilodibe
Tony Cynthia Estates Ltd
Mr. Lewis Anokwu
DATE THE SUIT WAS FILED: 20TH of March 2013
COURT THE CASE WAS FILED: IKEJA HIGH COURT JUDICIAL DIVISION
BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE FACTS OF THE CASE FILED:
The Statement of claim alleges that the “defendants misrepresented to the claimants a false and pretended deed of assignment of the following properties in the OGUNDAIRO BASHORUN AND SUNMONU AKANO FAMILY LANDS AT AMUWO ODOFIN LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF LAGOS STATE”
The first Claimant alleges that sometime in 2005 he was sold a piece of land by the defendant measuring approximately 1023.534 square meters for N1.5Million and another land measuring approximately 1953.036 square meters for N2Million while the second Claimants jointly also alleged that sometime in 2005 they were sold a piece of land by the defendant measuring approximately 3417.094 square meters for N3Million.
The Claimants further claimed that after they erected a fence to take possession of the property they bought from the defendants, they were now bombarded by a plethora of lawsuit with respect to that particular land from different quarters such as the Lagos State Government and the Chairman of the Ifelodun local government and while that case was still going on.
Another set of people and companies in 2009 also contested ownership of that same land in dispute against the claimants and in 2010 again another set of people contested ownership of this same land and brought concrete evidence that the land belongs to them by virtue of a Certificate of Occupancy granted to them by the Lagos state government in 1977.
The Claimants finally came to a conclusion that they did not have a good title to the land from the beginning and accepted the fact that they have been fighting fruitlessly to keep a land that they did not validly own from the start and the numerous law suits on the land were seriously overwhelming them plus draining their pockets to the tune of N20Million paid to solicitors to defend the various law suits.
As a final point the Claimants decided to look at the original sellers aka the Defendants to indemnify them for their loss and have sued them for their insensitivity for not assisting them throughout all their numerous legal to prove they own a better title and for misrepresentation of false documents and a failed transaction
OMONILE LAWYER FINAL THOUGHTS ON THIS LAND DISPUTE:
This is a very sad case and it exposes the peril of buying a land without proper search which could lead to the loss of Millions of Naira. Although we haven’t heard from the defendants, there are some questions I would like to ask all parties to the suit to explain how this land mess got to this stage.
1. Why was there no search from the beginning to ascertain the proper owners?
2. How did the land get transferred to the Defendants aka who sold the lands to them before they sold it to the Claimants?
3. What role did the Omoniles play in selling the lands to the defendants? Was it done legally or fraudulently?
4. How did the Surveyor do a survey plan without knowing the place already has a proper survey plan lodged at the Surveyor General’s office?
5. Where were the original alleged owners of the land who claimed they had a Certificate of Occupancy 28years after it was issued by the Lagos State Government and have allowed so many parties encroach on that land to lay claim to it without securing the lands?
6. Why didn’t the defendants assist the Claimants to help them fight against other Litigants trying to lay claim to those lands?
7. Do the defendants know the effects of an Indemnity clause in a Deed of Assignment and why they can be held liable?
CAVEAT AND WARNING:
Avoid buying Land in this disputed area till the matter has been determined by the courts. If you buy a land here you will be buying a law suit because the matter is still in court.
Make sure if you come across the OGUNDAIRO BASHORUN AND SUNMONU AKANO LANDS AT AMUWO ODOFIN in Amuwo Odofin Local Government you investigate it properly to know whether the land you intend to purchase is not in court so that you can buy their lands peacefully.
To get more information about this case get in touch with the Solicitors of both the Claimants and Defendants. We would be keeping an eye on this case to follow it up to its logical conclusion to know who the court finally grants ownership of this land and whether the prayers of the claimants will be upheld or struck out.